is the protagonist, searching for enlightenment. He starts out as the most talented Brahmin’s son, and loved by all, but he is discontented and doesn’t trust in the teaching. He wishes to join a group… (read full character analysis)


is Siddhartha’s childhood friend, who grows up admiring Siddhartha’s high calling and wants to follow him on his journey, which he believes will lead to sainthood. Govinda’s own path seems to always follow in… (read full character analysis)

Siddhartha’s father

is a wise Brahmin and tries to teach his talented son, but Siddhartha soon outgrows the Brahmin teaching and needs to follow his own path. His father is reluctant to let him go, but when… (read full character analysis)


is the venerable Buddha, who has achieved enlightenment. While Siddhartha is a samana, Gautama arrives in the forest and is followed by many pilgrims seeking teaching. His voice and calm, smiling manner deeply affect Siddhartha(read full character analysis)


is a courtesan, who is treated as a queen by the town and spotted by Siddhartha as she travels by sedan into a pleasure grove. Her smile shows him that she has the potential to… (read full character analysis)
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is the rich merchant whom Siddhartha works for when he comes into town. He teaches Siddhartha how to trade and gamble, but he is frustrated when Siddhartha’s wisdom and lack of interest in profits detract… (read full character analysis)


is a ferryman who teaches Siddhartha the importance of listening. The first night that he hosts Siddhartha, he listens perfectly to his story and shows him how to listen to the voice of the river(read full character analysis)

Young Siddhartha

is the son of Siddhartha and Kamala, conceived in the pleasure grove of the town where Siddhartha has learned the art of love. Young Siddhartha, when he first meets his father, has been nurtured… (read full character analysis)

Young woman

A young woman whom Siddhartha encounters as he walks to the town. As he asks her directions, Siddhartha finds himself lusting after her. His inner voice calls out to him to stop, though not before… (read full character analysis)
Minor Characters
Siddhartha's mother
A minor character in the novel, Siddhartha's mother takes joy in her son's great intellectual gifts.